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Tuesday, March 19, 2013

Corporate phones dying out

Category:   Secure File Transfer   Enterprise Mobility

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The technological landscape of the business world has changed dramatically in recent years. Developments such as the rise of cloud computing, big data analytics and more have greatly affected the way in which organizations pursue their corporate objectives in virtually every capacity.

In addition to the technological innovations mentioned above, one of the most significant developments has been the rise of bring your own device (BYOD). Numerous companies have begun to allow employees to use their personal smartphones, tablets and laptops to perform work-related functions. This policy can improve flexibility and efficiency, although it also carries significant risks. Specifically, firms with BYOD policies must invest in secure file transfer solutions to ensure that data sent to and from these devices remains protected.

As more firms realize the benefits of BYOD, the trend is likely to grow. As Ron Miller, writing for Cite World, recently highlighted, there is significant evidence to suggest that the growth of BYOD is enough to effectively cause corporate-issued phones to begin dying out.

End of an era
Miller noted that the most recent comScore U.S. market share figures revealed that BlackBerry and Microsoft are doing extremely poorly in the United States. This is significant, as both companies' strategies largely center upon organizations choosing their products for company-issued phone policies.

This is particularly noteworthy in the case of BlackBerry, which was formerly the leading mobile phone solution and strongly affiliated with business use. Miller pointed out that in 2009, BlackBerry controlled approximately two-fifths of the U.S. smartphone market. Now, it controls less than 6 percent.

Miller also reported that at the recent Mobile World Congress conference, BlackBerry did not even have a booth, despite its previous prominence in this industry.

BlackBerry's falling fortunes were also recently highlighted by Matt Hamblen. Hamblen conducted an informal survey of approximately 30 CIOs and senior VPs of IT at the Computerworld Premier conference. Writing for Computerworld, Hamblen noted that only one of these individuals had any plans of adopting the latest BlackBerry platform. Furthermore, that lone CIO indicated he only used BlackBerry because his boss wanted him to.

Solutions needed
Apple and Android smartphones are simply the devices of choice for most consumers, and their growing dominance of the mobile sector suggests that BYOD is growing in prominence and impact.

This means that there will be an even greater need for data protection solutions for mobile devices in the near future. Firms that adopt BYOD policies without also investing in data security will be greatly at risk of suffering a data breach, which can have a devastating impact on a company.

When looking for secure file sharing solutions for BYOD deployments, firms must consider several factors. Obviously, these tools must be secure and dependable. Additionally, companies must put a premium on ease-of-use. If a file sharing solution is unwieldy or time-consuming, employees will inevitably find and utilize workarounds, putting corporate data at risk.